The three-day New Year’s “EVE” celebration presented by the Downtown Alliance will welcome in 2012 on Dec. 29, Dec. 30 and Dec. 31., city and arts leaders announced Wednesday morning.
Jeffrey Berke, who plans most of the entertainment with his company Corporate Staging Resources, promised a festival with new-this-year features to entice Utahns to come to the West Temple area between 100 South and 200 South and the Calivn Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center during the lead-up to New Year’s Eve.
“Salt Lake City is the winter destination capital,” Berke said at a press conference held at the newly renamed Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (formerly the Salt Lake Art Center). “But it has never had a festival.”
EVE is in its third year after 16 years of First Night celebrations in Salt Lake City, and Jason Mathis, Downtown Alliance executive director, said festival organizers learned valuable lessons from the first two years of the event that will be instituted this year.
For one, the price for the event will be $12 in advance, and $15 at the door, that will allow participants access to all three nights’ worth of entertainment. Last year, the price was $10 per day.
In addition, Mathis said, there will be an emphasized focus on indoor activities as well as attractions that will appeal to the area’s large population of university students.
One of the latter is the Temple of Boom, a structure inspired by Nevada’s Burning Man event, Berke said. Replacing last year’s snowboarding exhibitions on West Temple, the Temple of Boom is an electronic music installation with a 40-foot Mayan Temple with fire that shoots 30 foot into the air. Nationally-touring electronic musicians such as Russ Liquid, Gladkill, Sugarpill and EOTO will spin music around a stage surrounding the structure.
Also new this year is a mascot, stEVE, which looks like Big Bird after a weekend bender.
At the Salt Palace, there will be live music by local bands such as King Niko, The Anser (as seen on “The X-Factor”) and The Terks, as well as a Reggae Snowsplash featuring reggae bands. There will also be the return of what is surely children’s favorite aspect of EVE: Bouncetown, a collection of about two dozen inflatable playgrounds. Also returning will be the Ballroom, with DJs spinning as audiences trip the light fantastic among 2.012 beach balls ranging from one foot in diameter to seven feet, Fireworks will explode over the sky at midnight on New Year’s Eve.
Other EVE activities will be held at venues including Broadway Centre Cinemas, the Off-Broadway Theatre, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, the Clark Planetarium and Temple Square.
“We are psyched,” said David Everitt, chief of staff for Mayor Ralph Becker. “We look forward to another big party.”
For more information about all of the activities, go to www.EVEslc.com